Psycological effects of stomas

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Hozzer
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 10/7/2007 12:46 PM (GMT -6)   
Dear all I am new to this but would truely value our opinions and advise I am applying for a post as a colorectal nurse and would love to have some input from individuals who are experiencing or have experienced problems rather from a text book or journal.

peggy113
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Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 1998
   Posted 10/7/2007 1:44 PM (GMT -6)   

What kind of problems are you looking for ?!  If you read back through some of the threads, you will find a plethora of problems yeah !!!  

I was told by my ET many years ago that losing your natural way of going to the bathroom, whether urostomy, colostomy, ileostomy, whatever - is similar to losing any part of the body.  Like an amputee.  You can have some of the same types of phantom feelings and you can go through some of the same depressions, etc.   It is a HUGE adjustment and we are all here in this forum to support each other.  We have all gone thru or are about to go thru similar surgeries, procedures. 

 


Peggy
      
Diagnosed with CD in 1979, many resections and meds
Perm Ileostomy July 1984 at Cleveland Clinic
Disease free since surgery 
 


Hozzer
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 10/7/2007 1:56 PM (GMT -6)   
I was mostly concerned with the problems of noise and odour and the effects these may have or the individual considered these could or would have and what helped to alleivate these concerns.

flchurchlady
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Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 2765
   Posted 10/7/2007 6:36 PM (GMT -6)   
Hozzer,
The only problem I've ever had was during the first two weeks after my ileostomy surgery, because my stoma took 10 days to start working. They started me on a liquid diet after surgery and then slowly introduced solid food. After a couple of days, my stoma was still not working, so I began vomiting. They put in an NG tube to stop the vomiting.
 
Once my stoma started working, it went crazy and filled up the bag every hour with liquid. I quickly became dehydrated. I felt like I had a fever, so I called the nurse at 2:00 in the morning to check my temperature and turn the air conditioner on in my room. When she checked my vitals, my heartbeat was 200! I remember seeing that high number, and then I passed out. Thank God I called her, because I could've layed there for hours before somebody checked on me.
 
I woke up in ICU and spent a couple of days there getting I.V. fluids as fast as they could get them into me. Looking back, they should have increased my I.V. fluids when my stoma started putting out at such a high rate. Had they done that, I probably would not have gotten so dehydrated. Once I got over that incident, everything has been smooth sailing ever since.
 
I had Crohn's in my large intestine and rectum for seven years, and I feel great since I had a proctocolectomy. I'm so glad that I had both surgeries, because they have given me my life back. I don't mind having an ileostomy, because I feel great now, and I know it is all because of my ostomy. I have been pain free and medicine free for a year now, and it is the closest thing to a cure I've ever experienced.
 
If you have any other questions, please feel free to ask. Good luck, and I hope you get the job!
 
:-)  Cecilia


Dx'd w/ Crohn's in '99 at age 28. Proctocolectomy and ileostomy in '06.
Pain-free, med-free, and very thankful to be healthy again :)


Amey
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Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 942
   Posted 10/7/2007 7:20 PM (GMT -6)   
Hozzer,

My stoma is quiet...rarely ever makes a peep. As for odor, my bags are almost odor-free. So, I am not a good canidate for either of your questions. I can tell you that having a stoma affects my self-image and I am constantly frustrated by the bump under my pants. That is something I am working on getting past. Other than that, I am Ok and pretty happy with my stoma.
Amey
 
 
Ileostomy 8/2007
Revised Coletomy/ Reset Anastimosis 2006
Revised Colectomy/ Obstructions 2005
Sub-total Colectomy 2001
 
Prov. 16: 20 Whoso trusteth in the Lord, happy is he.
 
Zelnorm, Colace, Motilium, Citrate of Magnesium, Nexium, Amitiza, Potassium, Magnesium, Miralax, Milk of Magnesium, Corgard, Glycerin Suppositories, Sorbitol, Bentyl, Senokot


flchurchlady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 2765
   Posted 10/7/2007 7:52 PM (GMT -6)   
Hozzer,
Oops, I didn't see your second question until now. My stoma is very quiet, too, and the bags are air tight, so I have no fear of noise or odor. I also put a few capfuls of 3% hydrogen peroxide in the bag each time I empty it, and there is no odor then either. All in all, I am very happy with my stoma. One positive psychological effect to having a stoma is pure joy, because of my newfound health and freedom from Crohn's disease. :-)
Cecilia

summerstorm
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 6571
   Posted 10/7/2007 8:10 PM (GMT -6)   
hozzer-i am curious, are you a new ostomate AND applying for a job or just applying for a job (i am a bit slow on the uptake sometimes, lol)
anyway, i haven't had any problems with odor so far, just the couple of times i had those defective bags on, and the few times i didn't put the bag on right, but as a general rule i don't have problems.  At first i had lots of noise and gas and such, but that has calmed down ALOT, relaly only at night do i have problems with my bag being full of air, and then i just walk into the batrhoom, burp the bag and wash my hands and go back to bed.
I had UC for 8 years before i did this, and for most of those 8 years i would have rather died than have an ostomy, but then i realzied that what i was doing was NOT living.  So, i came to terms with it, and got cut open, lol.
It wasnt' my lifelong dream to go poo in a bag, but it is nowhere near the worst thing that ever happened to me, it's actually pretty far down the list.
I occasionally think that it is showing, but i really think that's justbecause i know it's there, nooone has said anything to me so far, and i haven't told my work or even my closest friends.
As for noise, i take some gas-x and put those geltabs in my bag before i go somewhere, and i make sure to not let myself get too hungry and i don'thave much gas or noise. 
Anyway, hope that helps and good luck with your job!

Hozzer
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 10/8/2007 8:06 AM (GMT -6)   
Thank you everyone for your replies my interview is on tuesday what were your fears proir to your surgeries and also how do you feel about your body images and what has helped to relieve your anxieties ps interview is late GMT so any posting would still be of help. Cheers!

flchurchlady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 2765
   Posted 10/8/2007 3:01 PM (GMT -6)   
Hozzer,
My fear prior to surgery was that I would continue to be sick AND have a bag attached to me. I didn't think that surgery would make me feel better, because nobody ever presented it to me that way. My doctors would say, "Looks like you need to have your colon out," and never give me any positive points to having surgery done. I would get defensive, and say, "I don't think so." And that's how it went for 7 years.

The Crohn's got so bad that my doctors gave me the option of a temporary ileostomy to let my colon possibly heal. Since I knew it was reversible, I gave it a try and found out that I felt much better and liked the freedom that it gave me. My colon ended up flaring while it was bypassed, so I chose to have it and my rectum removed and have never regretted that decision.

My husband has been very supportive all along. He tells me that I'm beautiful, which really helps. His acceptance of my new body has helped me accept it, too. I wear stylish clothes and nobody can tell that I have a bag, so it's really not a big deal. A lot of people remember how sick I was, and they're amazed at how healthy I am now. I feel proud to say that I had surgery and that it took care of my problem.

Hope that information helps you, and good luck on Tuesday!
Cecilia
Dx'd w/ Crohn's in '99 at age 28. Proctocolectomy and ileostomy in '06.
Pain-free, med-free, and very thankful to be healthy again :)


MMMNAVY
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Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 6927
   Posted 10/10/2007 9:25 AM (GMT -6)   
As a student therapist who emphasis is in medical family therapy the psychological effects are actually just as important (the feeling of loss/a hopeful regain of health) as the medical aspects of the bag. I mean psychological as the emotional aspects (i.e. sex issues, body image, being comfortable in one's skin: which is what I think you were trying to get at, etc.). One has to make sure that the bag is not going to cause a deep depression and all of it's complications (including death).
 
It is in Kitchen Table Wisdom or her other book that the doc author (who also has crohns) talks about her experience with this one bag nurse.  The nurse had changed to go out and was attending her last patient (the doc) and the way she treated the doc really made the doc put an emphasis on the dignity of the patient in her own practice.


Forum Moderator 
I will find a way, or make one.-Philip Sidney
Make sure your suffering has meaning...

Post Edited (MMMNAVY) : 10/10/2007 9:33:03 AM (GMT-6)


flchurchlady
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Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 2765
   Posted 10/10/2007 6:50 PM (GMT -6)   
I was definitely more down emotionally when I used to be chronically ill. It was exhausting to be sick all the time and on medicine with crazy side effects, like prednisone. Now that I'm healthy and medicine-free, I'm much happier and couldn't care less about having a stoma, because I know that it saved my life. :-)
Dx'd w/ Crohn's in '99 at age 28. Proctocolectomy and ileostomy in '06.
Pain-free, med-free, and very thankful to be healthy again :)


summerstorm
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 6571
   Posted 10/10/2007 8:08 PM (GMT -6)   
i'm with her on that one. It's not the most fun in the world and it wasn't my childhood dream to have a bag of poo on my tummy, but it also wasn't my dream to miss out on my life. and given the chance to go bakc i would take the bag the day i got sick.

peggy113
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 1998
   Posted 10/11/2007 7:55 PM (GMT -6)   

Ditto - I feel the same as flchurchlady and summerstorm!  Not my first choice, but it made me healthy again (and saved my life).

 


Peggy
      
Diagnosed with CD in 1979, many resections and meds
Perm Ileostomy July 1984 at Cleveland Clinic
Disease free since surgery 
 


Ohio43
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 212
   Posted 10/15/2007 5:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Hozzer, after reading over this thread, I noticed someone asked you if you have or are planning to get an ostomy? I'm curious myself. I received an temporary ileostomy on July 23 so that I am able to heal from rectal surgery. ( had a baby 21 years ago when I had a 4th degree laceration from an episiotomy (spelling?). Since June 21, I've had four surgeries. After the first two in June, my doctor felt it would be best to have the ileostomy so the area could heal better. I couldn't agree more. It was hell trying to keep the area clean when you have no musle control and a severe incontinence problem. I told my doctor I'd keep the ostomy as long as it took to heal. It hasn't been a problem really. The only problem was an allergic reaction to the Hollister brand. No problems with odor. I guess it would depend on what you eat...just like you would have to watch without an ostomy.

summerstorm
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 6571
   Posted 10/15/2007 8:11 PM (GMT -6)   
you know the thing that has changed the most for me, and this is a totally weird thing to be annoyed about, but i have started to put things in my left pocket instead of my right. I did that, becuse i always put everything i have in my pockets, and after sticking a pair of earrings in my right pocket one day, i realzied that that was probably not the smartest thing to do! so to keep from doing something like that again, i just put stuff in my other pocket, which is rather annoying

flchurchlady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 2765
   Posted 10/16/2007 5:19 AM (GMT -6)   
Hozzer,
How did your interview go? Did you get the job?
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